After a lot of debate, I decided to create a guide "based on a live example" on building profitable Squidoo lenses in light of the many recent algo changes. The guide can be summed up as:
"A Straight-Forward Approach to Creating Compelling Lenses That Rank Quicker, Profit Faster, And Are Loved By Google"
It was becoming evident questions addressed at me and my responses were gumming up Matt's thread which was not my intention, so I've moved the conversation here. I am still working on the project and will get it done as soon as possible without sacrificing quality of information. You can see the discussions as they previously unfolded below.
In the meantime while I'm working on the guide, please feel free to post any general questions you may have about marketing on Squidoo:
[quote name='Matthew Anton' timestamp='1334945128' post='33696']
Hello fellow Webmasters,
I have posted this on a few other reputable websites for healthy discussion and feedback. I will address any and all comments for this thread by TrafficPlanet members.
The point of this case study is to determine how much $$ can be made on Squidoo; like Mr. Terry Kyle I get my "jollies" by doing random tests online since things can get a bit stale. This is month 1 one the case study tracking ranking, traffic, affiliate sales, and money earned
Full case study with images:
[quote name='slohc' timestamp='1335013796' post='33935']
The question is : why squidoo?
[quote name='Matthew Anton' timestamp='1335065966' post='34098']
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335035981' post='34032']
I'd like to step in here and shed some light on this topic. I do appreciate the case study, but I think this is a gross understatement of the potential with Squidoo. I use Squidoo almost exclusively for my affiliate promotions. I don't know how much time you spent on each lens, but 420 lenses is an enormous work load that had to have taken A LOT of time & energy to develop. If you're only generating $17 a month from these lenses, it's evident one of three things is occurring:
1) you're not properly monetizing your lens
2) you're not doing a good enough job with your seo to pull strong traffic
3) you're entering into niches in which the affiliate opportunities don't yield healthy payouts
I can spend as much as a week's time on a lens getting it put together, so I never build one unless it's going to make me at minimum $500/mo. It's all in what you make of it. If you treat a lens like an adsense site, you're going to get adsense earnings. By default, Squidoo's "modules" allow you to profit from things like Amazon products, Ebay products, Adsense clicks, etc. From my experience, these monetization methods aren't going to make you rich. You need to scour other affiliate networks to see if you can get a higher payout on a product.
Just to use some of the above niches as an example, many electronic products are going to have a certain shelf life before something newer comes out, and then search demand and profit potential just dies off. So if you're going to get into a niche at all, realize how much time you stand to pull in revenue from a product, and get in and milk it for everything it's worth while you can.
Quick example... The very first Squidoo lens I ever setup was about a year ago. I was struggling to make money online, and my efforts at setting up fresh domains and chasing the wave of popularity surrounding a product weren't paying off. I already knew about Squidoo, but a WSO I read led me to revisit it. The product was for a popular "as seen on tv" kids stuffed animal that sold for $20. It had about 6,000 exact match searches at the time on Google alone. My payout was only $1 through Amazon, but another affiliate network i was a part of was offering a $9 payout. Which one would you choose? If you're not going to do your due diligence in researching affiliate networks to find the best payout, you're leaving a lot of money on the table.
I'm not saying I never monetize a lens with Amazon modules, but it's never my primary focus on converting sales. Unless you're selling a high end price tag product, an Amazon payout just isn't going to make it worth my time. I too share earnings with Squidoo, but I just opt to let them keep any adsense clicks and donate these small earnings (maybe $5/mo.) to a charity of my choice or to Squidoo themselves which you can setup in your dashboard.
You don't have to use their modules to make money, and I would encourage you to not make these your emphasis for revenue. Just like you would on a blog, you can put text links and banner ads to your affiliate products. I still go through buying a domain name & point text links to this domain which disguises affiliate urls and redirects to my affiliate offer.
Although this as seen on tv product (that was only available online) would soon make it into bix box retailers 4 months later, resulting in my income from it to dry up, I managed to make $4K in 3 months with my biggest month bringing in $1600. Again, this was the first lens I ever setup, and realistically I caught the niche after it had hit it's prime, so I could have made much more. All from a $20 kids toy.
This was the starting point for me online and since then I've made numerous lenses that have brought in $500-$3000/mo. from each lens, require little maintenance, and rank much faster than setting up a fresh domain. When you're already behind the 8 ball by the time you discover a niche you want to attack, capitalizing on a PR 7 domain to publish my lens is a lot better than waiting for a brand new PR N/A domain to rank.
So the take away here is you can create 420 lenses with poor optimization & monetization techniques that make you $17/mo., or you can do a better job upfront with your lens creation, product & keyword research, search optimization, and make $100's - $1,000's per month from just one.
I want to reiterate this post was not to undermine the case study, but Squidoo was the launch pad for me to realizing "I can actually do this" and make money online. I know for me starting out, I was spending more time, effort, & money trying to get new domains ranked, but often gave up not seeing the project through because it was taking too much time & money before I would see any profit. Looking back now, I'm sure I could have ranked some of these sites in time, but having not made any money, I chalked it up to either me not doing something right or the competition was too stiff. Squidoo allowed me to rank & profit quickly, which gave me the confidence to continue pursuing my online ventures, something I may have given up on otherwise.
[quote name='Matthew Anton' timestamp='1335065898' post='34097']
Thanks for your well thought out reply Logan and support from others. Can you share an example of a lense completely fleshed out that you made this money from?
Most of these lenses in this case study are templated, but a few are more detailed.
Would you really rate this lense as subpar or not well thought out?
Or this one?
Or this one?
You can see on many of these I took an ample amount of time doing my due diligence to provide great content on the lenses (I read character biographies for hours plus I'm a fan). Guess what, the earnings are 0 for those lenses, but for other products they are converting. The risk reward ratio isn't there if you focus on a product for days and it doesn't convert. Need to spread the risk.
When you are stating "you can make more" I agree but you would probably have to spend days or weeks fine tuning a lense and hope it converts.
My PS3 vs Xbox 360 vs Wii is proof of that. That literally took days and days of research and creating the lense - 0 earnings.
I understand if you have a hugely successful ranking lense you will make more $$ but for 99% of squidoo users you aren't going to get Lense of the Day, and your lenses will most likely resemble my earnings versus what you have put forth (closer to hundreds or thousands a month?).
It's a bit like the 1% real life rich people telling the 99% to get their act together. Let's face it, if we asked HONESTLY how many people were raking in XXXX per month on Squidoo I bet the real number is scary low.
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335073965' post='34113']
Mathew, I'll respond to your post in 2 parts. First I'll address, your questions pertaining to your lenses you've listed specifically. In regards to showing you a lens that makes money, I'll completely expose one of my lenses. There's been a lot of talk on these forums lately about people asking if web 2.0's rank well, because they've been noticing tier 1 properties they are pointing to their money site ranking very well. I've elaborated in some of these topics and have been getting a lot of questions, so here's what I'm going to do:
I'm going to create a WSO of sorts, but just for this forum. I'll make a sales thread and sell it for a very reasonable price. I'm talking less than $20. "The Makings of a $733/mo. Squidoo Lens - A How To Guide". I'm not about to expose some of my higher earning lenses & niches for obvious reasons, but I think this lens in particular will bode well for a case study and learning experience. I'll break everything down:
- How I found the product
- How I search for affiliate opportunities and monetization options
- How I do keyword research
- How I setup the lens
- Which tags to choose and how to find the right ones
- How I optimize it
- How I rank for multiple keywords
- A trick to boost your CTR I see almost no one use
- Why Squidoo?
- Squidoo HTML tweaks
- How I handle any maintenance of the lens
- My challenges and hurdles along the way
- etc, etc, etc...
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335083900' post='34134']
Ok, Matthew, let's start off with:
I'm not sure what keywords precisely you were targeting here, but let's just take the keyword phrase "ps3 vs xbox 360" because it's in your title tag. Google shows an exact match search of 9,900 per month which is respectable. Average CPC is $0.87 which is not bad either. Again, not sure what keywords you're getting traffic from, but for this phrase, I stopped looking for your lens after page 5 in the serps. If your goal is anything less than page 1 above the fold for the main keyphrase you're targetting, you should reconsider if it's worth doing at all. I can only presume your traffic stats aren't mind blowing, which will impact sales. There is no doubt people are spending money on these products, so let's dig deeper as to what may be the problem here.
It looks like you've spent a lot of time on this lens putting in some good content, so I won't critique that. I could go on and on with ways this lens could be better optimized for traffic and sales, but let me get right to the point on why this lens isn't making any money, and it has nothing to do with the obvious.
THE UNDERLYING ISSUE:
From the brief time I've spent reviewing this lens, it appears to be centrally focused around comparing the gaming units. This is good in theory, and review sites do work, but let's cover some issues here. Put yourself in the shoes of the consumer. I'm Joe Blow and I'm interested in buying a gaming console. For me, I'm torn between a ps3 and an xbox 360. I want to know more information about the two so I can better make a buying decision. So I go online looking to solve my dilemma and determine which unit will work best for me.
Problem #1: Even if I like your review, what is the likelihood I will decide to buy this particular product from you online? Why would I let's say buy a console on Amazon and wait a week for it to get shipped to my house? I know I can go down to Best Buy and buy the console today, I can dig into the box and pull out all the cool components like it's Christmas morning today, I can start playing my favorite game today, versus having to wait a week for it to show up on my doorstep. People are naturally impulsive, and don't want to wait for anything if they don't have to. Issue #1 is that you've created a lens that although may be informative, people won't buy from. Not because you're not providing good information, but because it's way more convenient and gratifying to get the product in their hands sooner rather than later, even if that means they spend more money at a brick & mortar retailer. If you are going to take this route, you have to do an amazing job of convincing people to buy from you now, and online.
Problem #2: The products you are selling on the lens (although related) are actually irrelevant to the what the lens is centrally focused about, and likely the kind of traffic you're getting. All the products you're selling are games, but yet I see no opportunity to buy a console from this lens. If your lens is about reviews of "game consoles", don't try sand sell them "video games". That's not what they searched for. Although I still stand by my statement above, you would at least give yourself a fighting chance by placing Amazon links for these consoles. After all, that's what you're reviewing, that's what your page title is about, and that "should be" what you're trying to sell. If I want to buy video games, I'll search for them specifically.
Relevancy is key here. Search engines try and deliver relevant results for a reason, and you should be doing everything you can to deliver a relevant product, or at least an alternative to what they searched for that will still satisfy their need. Furthermore, as a consumer, I'm not ready to buy a video game yet. Remember at this point I'm just trying to determine which console to buy, so purchasing a game isn't on my agenda at the immediate moment. Even if you had page 1 ranking, the 2 above reasons are why this lens isn't converting sales. From a buyer's perspective, I know I can get my instant gratification by buying this product elsewhere, and the products you're offering me aren't relevant to what I'm searching for.
Google's keyword tool shows me exact match local monthly searches of 110. For me, this is WAY too low to even pursue, but let's still entertain the idea. One thing I never promote is products that are available at a lot of different retailers. If you're trying to convert sales with organic traffic, you have to understand what challenges these types of product and retailers pose to your success profiting from that niche. Do a search on Google for "wonder woman statue" and let's see what we find:
First off, I'm seeing 5 paid ad placements for some big name retailers. Then I'm seeing an additional 3 listings under shopping results. This is a bad sign right out of the gate. 50% of the serp page above the fold is shopping results, occupying a lot of real estate. Then your first organic listing is Amazon. With a product like this, people really don't need a review to buy. They know what they want, and they are just looking for a place to buy it at the best price. Even if you have the top organic listing just below the shopping results, the searcher has 8 opportunities at the top of the serp to buy this product, all with price points listed. So what do they need to read your page for? If you're going to tackle this niche product, you better be at the #1 organic listing under the shopping results, and your title tag MUST provide an extremely compelling reason why that searcher should click on your page before clicking on any of the shopping results above.
The only plus with this particular product is it's not something you can just run down to Walmart and pick up off the shelf. You'll likely need to buy it online (which is HUGE for physical product affiliate campaigns). Having said that, I tend to stray from campaigns that have that much "shopping results" presence at the top of the serps. Let me caveat this statement with some exceptions:
The first being Christmas. If I know a product will be hot for the holiday season, even if they can get it at a local store, I may decide to promote it. People spend billions online for Christmas, and many people will buy online and ship directly to a relative, grandchild, etc, versus buying it at a store, and then having to ship it themselves. In addition, with it being a preplanned event, awaiting shipping time frames are less of a concern because people aren't going to open gifts until Christmas, so this squashes the "instant gratification" issues. The second exception is high end products people are less likely to buy until they've read reviews first. Despite the existence of heavy shopping results in the serps, if I know that "product name reviews" is searched for a lot, and I'm confident I can get a top spot in the serps just below the shopping results without a searching having to scroll down to find me, and i know I stand to make a decent chunk off each sales, then it's a more attractive opportunity.
Taking into consideration that people are not likely looking for a "review" on this product, there's heavy paid & organic shopping results occupying a lot of the top serps, and with only 110 exact match searches for this term gives this promotion an "I'll pass" rating. Don't create a lens just because an affiliate opportunity exists to "potentially" make money. You're probably building lenses in a backwards approach. Don't create lenses on just any random topic and then try and figure out how to monetize them. Spending more time on the front end researching the profit potential of a campaign, evaluating your competition in the serps, and determining the difficulty of an organic search campaign will mean you spend less time building 100's of lenses that amount to nothing, and more time getting intimate with a promotion that will get you paid.
Alot of the same here. Very low search volume, and no real need for someone to review your page before making a buying decision. With that being said, there's no reason you couldn't easily acquire a page 1, position 1 listing in the serps for these "statue" terms with a properly optimized lens, sound seo, and a backlink campaign to get you there.
THE POSITIVE TAKEAWAY:
You created 400+ lenses, with extremely minimal return on investment (even if that investment was just time), and you're still plugging away at it. This degree of persistence is rare, and an enormous personal asset. With that work ethic, once you figure out how to attack the right niches, with the right blueprint, and the right seo efforts to back it, you'll be crushing it in no time. Hopefully my "how-to lens case study" will help set you on the right track so you stop spinning your wheels and start banking. I'd ideally like to have this done in a week, so I'll keep everyone posted.
[quote name='GodMode' timestamp='1335109638' post='34227']
You are huge man j/k Logan has made a good point here. I appreciate the case study but honestly I think that you put too much work in and sadly the return of it will not be that good. Homever I'll be checking for updates , good luck
[quote name='Dhayes' timestamp='1335119682' post='34268']
Logan - please let us know here when you do release that WSO, I will certainly pick up a copy (and I am not an easy sell).
[quote name='BlogNinja' timestamp='1335136769' post='34305']
Logan, that was some really amazing insight. Printed it out for further referencing.
I work with Squidoo a lot myself, so expect an elaboration on your pointers from my end in a few days.
Printed it for reference.
[quote name='JSP' timestamp='1335148869' post='34328']
Logan, how are you directing people to other offers? From my (admittedly limited) experience with Squidoo, they're VERY quick to jump on lenses that are promoting products outside of their "bubble."
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335149903' post='34335']
I've never experienced this, but if you have a low quality lens that is just about pushing products and not quality information, this might happen (but I'm not sure). Squidoo does police lenses of low quality and lenses that are underdeveloped and/or don't meet their TOS in regards to topics they don't allow.
For outbound text links, I'll buy a closely related domain name that looks legit, point the links to this domain, or a page on the domain, i.e. "domain.com/special-offer.php" that then redirects to the affiliate offer. I do this more to disguise the ugly affiliate url from visitors more than anything. Since Squidoo limits you to 10 outbound links to a single domain per lens, I usually won't bother disguising affiliate urls on banner images. I think people are accustomed to seeing tracking urls on banner ads, so I let this be. This way I can provide plenty of buying opportunities for the reader and can overcome the 10 links to a domain threshold.
I've never received any communication from Squidoo with a concern about this on my lenses, but again, I make sure my lenses are of the utmost quality and serve both an informative purpose as well as soliciting products. The way I do it, it doesn't appear I'm selling something, but rather.referring others to a product I like and want to share my experience with it. I also strip down ads to the bare minimum allowable, and donate all the proceeds to Squidoo or another charity, so that may trigger some lenience, who knows?
Do you have an example lens you can share and the methods you've attempted in promoting offers outside of their default modules?
[quote name='rodelio.lagahit' timestamp='1335164272' post='34361']
just brilliant! I think any person who wanted to try squidoo should read this first. but, i'll still believe matt can pull it off because from my understanding his lenses are just a month old? or i was not following it right? because if it's just a month old, then he has still a lot of work to do to have that on the top page.
[quote name='JSP' timestamp='1335191141' post='34456']
No examples. I've put up a few lenses in the past but nothing really serious. (I preferred Hubpages back when I was doing this. Most of my hubs preformed pretty well.)
[quote name='Linda' timestamp='1335221701' post='34602']
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I heard that Squidoo has a profit sharing system for lenses depending on their ranking, which means you can actually earn a lot more that way than just from affiliate commissions.
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335222985' post='34606']
This is correct. To my knowledge, you get profit sharing regardless of your LensRank. However, I would hardly call this "a lot more money". I strip down my lenses to only show the mandated Google adsense ads, as that revenue is what keeps Squidoo running. I want to eliminate as many distractions and other ads as possible to keep my vistors staying on my page, and if they click out, I want it to one of my affiliate links, not some other network banner ad I'll make a few pennies on.
With this "stripped down" tactic, I'm sure I generate less earnings from this shared revenue pool, but on the lens I'm planning on creating the "how-to" guide for, it has made less than $100 in 2012 from the shared Ad Pool, which I donate anyway.
The revenue potential may indirectly be attributed to LensRank, but LensRank usually comes with traffic. The more adsense clicks your lens generates, the greater the percentage of the ad pool you get.
[quote name='Matthew Anton' timestamp='1335229622' post='34622']
No, sounds frighteningly cliche, and the reason I decided to be so open with this study. I don't like when marketers make claims, give generic advice and never actually reveal anything (doesn't really benefit people unless you can show an example or two). However, if you do create this WSO and do reveal lenses that make $733 a month I'll be the first to buy it, but talking about products, tags, seo, backlinks, etc is preaching to the choir 99% of the time. The only thing that matters is action, not necessarily advice when it comes to Squidoo.
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335233897' post='34634']
I appreciate your candidness, seriously, and I'm glad you put in your two cents. I agree 100% with your thoughts, and I trust everyone else does too. The reality is, I've never produced an info product, WSO, or anything the like before. I'm not someone who churns these things out as an income stream. The only reason I'm doing the how-to guide is because as you can see from my previous posts, I'm long winded and detailed as it is. So trying to walk through all the detailed elements and actionable steps here wouldn't do justice.
Just like you say, you want to see an actual live example. Not something that made me money last year, but something that is making me money right now as I type this. Isn't that all what we really want? How many marketers are outing an active promotion they are running right now?
Trust me, this isn't going to be a linkbuilding course. God knows there's enough of that out there. I want others to be privy to what was going through my brain when I made this decision, or that decision. What happened when I hit a complete standstill with the lens and thought it was dead in the water, and how I fixed it to pull in the monthly profit I'm discussing.
Now, I'm not going to pretend I won't hint on some outside factors that definitely impacted the success I see with these lenses that aren't necessarily unique to Squidoo, but nonetheless they are sound fundamental principles that can make or break any campaign, whether you're using Squidoo or not. But rest assure, it will be all about Squidoo and how to maximize it's potential in the manner I do.
And Matt, you won't be the first to buy it, because you sir will be getting a review copy. Since your thread is what spawned its creation, I hope you will be the first to post a review as well once it's done.
[quote name='Walker2k10' timestamp='1335271623' post='34749']
Great info Logan Sargent, never really dabbled with squidoo lens but ive been considering it over the past few months and to hear about the potential from someone with clearly a lot of experience has been very useful! thanks
[quote name='Nelsonalbert' timestamp='1335527306' post='35942']
Thanks for the post . It will be really helpful.
[quote name='Fitgal' timestamp='1335534125' post='35967']
I have a report on how to make money with Squidoo called "Squidoo Fast Cash" which is included with my Article Traffic Jackpot WSO product - Step by Step Traffic Plan (link in signature).
It is not hard to make money with Squidoo at all. The key is to pick low competition keywords that can quickly rank in the SERPS. It also makes it fast and easy if you use Squidoo's links instead of your own. Though, I do add mine to some modules.
You can also make money with the Tier Ranking System. Lenses are ranked according to activity etc. This is for Overall ranking which fluctuates daily, so it is averaged.
Tier 1 is lenses ranked from 1 up to 2000
Tier 2 is 2001 and up to and including 10000
Tier 3 is 10001 up to 85000
Tier 4 is 85000
How much money? In April 2012 a Tier 1 lens earned around $35. Tier 2 earned around $6. Tier 3 about .30 cents. Anything over a Tier 4 earns nothing for tier payments.
Tier payments are icing on the cake.
I always suggest people develop an IM business they have as much control over as possible, but for extra cash, links and trying things out Squidoo is great!
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335553856' post='36072']
Thanks for your feedback. I think realistically this approach is no different than even if you were building a regular site. If you go after low search/competition keywords and use low payout affiliate modules built into Squidoo, the earnings won't be staggering. However, if you have the time to build a lot of lenses, this method can start to stack up.
[quote name='rodelio.lagahit' timestamp='1335571490' post='36157']
considering that seo'd sites are not anymore in (with the recent update), will the current practice on ranking your lenses still work? overall, i think there was a list somewhere in mashable that showed sites that were greatly affected by the update in terms of ranking
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335573274' post='36166']
Very good question. I can only speak to my experience, but my lenses were not impacted at all. I never ran ALN post links to my lenses, but I do have private network blog links with spun content with no impact on rankings.
[quote name='rodelio.lagahit' timestamp='1335577217' post='36196']
nice to hear that. will see from others if it's the same for us to validate everything (practices) when it comes to lenses.
i've never tried lenses before.
[quote name='jtgoodgame' timestamp='1335725525' post='36597']
I've made some good money on Squidoo lenses too, but please keep some perspective. Most lenses you make are barely going to make their money back. A bunch will flat out fail, and a few will be big winners. Some guys on this thread are making this seem like a home run every time opportunity, which is not at all true so please don't fall for it. It's a serious commitment and gamble like every other scheme on here. I've made some good money which keeps coming every month now (lifetime reccuring commissions!) but most of my lenses get 1 or 0 visits a day. Have make money, best of luck, but don't get carried away guys.
[quote name='Logan Sargent' timestamp='1335737378' post='36621']
Hi jtgoodgame, thanks for your feedback. I'm glad you brought this up as it really should be addressed. I can only presume this comment is focused towards me. I could be wrong, but it's a plausible guess. This is a very fair statement you've made, so let's open it up for some more discussion. Have I made lenses that have flopped? Absolutely! Especially when I was first starting out.
When you have one that works for the first time, you get excited, so you start trying to crank out new lenses to capitalize on all the opportunity out there. You expect ALL of them to all of sudden work like clockwork, but they don't. This is where I made mistakes initially as a marketer. I would find products I wanted to promote, would follow the same steps I did before as far as on-page seo and backlinking, but some just weren't producing sales. WTF? Why was this happening? I would get frustrated after spending a lot of time preparing a killer lens, and spending money on backlinking campaigns to get them ranked. But the sales just didn't follow.
I used to think failing was the worst, because it meant I "lost". "Maybe that last lens was a fluke, and I'm really not cut out for this". After having experienced more and more success, this couldn't be further from the truth. When you don't have a blueprint starting out, you really have no choice but to keep building out more and more lenses. After awhile, you have some winners and some losers. But here's where this gets you. At this point you have a metric of success to analyze against the failures. This is probably as important to a marketer as anything.
Once you can compare things side by side, you can start making conclusions based on similarities with the ones that worked, and what factors impacted the success of those that didn't. You start to see trends that you didn't see before. You start to realize, dang, I really shouldn't have even been in that niche, I shouldn't have targeted that product, or the product is good, and people are spending money on it, just not online. The more failures you have, the more examples you have of what to avoid next time.
When you get to this stage, this is when you really start making money, because you stop wasting time, effort, & cash on campaigns that don't stand a chance of pulling a profit before you ever write your first sentence of a review. It seems the common denominator with alot of people using Squidoo is that they churn out WAY too many lenses. When one doesn't work, they go to the next, then the next, then the next, never looking in the rear view mirror to get a valuable takeaway of why a lens is under-performing.
A lens doesn't need to generate "lifetime" residual income to be a success, and you don't have to create 100's to be profitable. I'd rather have 10 lenses that make $500/mo. each for 6 months than 100 lenses that make $500/mo. collectively for 2 years. Do the math. The reality is, you can always make more lenses, and more and more products will continue to surface with new affiliate opportunities, so a shortage is never a concern for me. I've said this before, you don't need to tackle every product you can find just because an affiliate opportunity exists.
My success comes from making the right choices when selecting products, niches, & keywords to go after. I'm very selective, but only because experience has taught me to do so if I want to yield the profit I expect for my time & effort. I also make reviews that aren't the norm with what you'll see throughout Squidoo. I don't just rehash product info a customer can find on the manufacturer's site, use a faceless avatar bio, and then throw up Amazon links expecting a miracle to happen. What value is that providing? I research my markets VERY well. I take the extra time to do things my competitors just aren't willing to do, so I can realize success with a lens when I build it.
Squidoo isn't a magic bullet. You still have to make good fundamental decisions as an affiliate marketer when attacking campaigns. This is no different even if you were building your own sites. The paramount reason I use Squidoo, is the leverage & speed it affords me in ranking my reviews versus building a new site from scratch. If you don't have the right game plan going in, Squidoo won't save you. But, if you take the appropriate steps on the front end with how you pick niches, how you setup your lens and write your review, Squidoo will ensure you profit faster, and it seems to at least be "more impervious" to rankings plummeting with the algo changes we've been seeing.
[quote name='SEO-Queen' timestamp='1335773550' post='36699']
I hope you still have time to work on that WSO for us Logan
Make sure you include some information about how you do the keyword/niche research you mention above and how we can tell if we have a "winner" or not. And of course let us know what methods we can use to make our reviews stand out from others as providing more value...
I have noticed more Squidoo lenses turning up in search results post-Penguin and I am also seeing Facebook pages ranking as well. I wonder if a similar thing could be done with Facebook pages as Google would love the social signals and it would be again difficult for a competitor to knock us out with negative SEO to a Squidoo or Facebook page.
Edited by Logan Sargent, 02 July 2012 - 09:17 AM.